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NI Water shares Silent Valley Mountain Park Masterplan consultation progress with public

26 October 2023 16:19

Silent Valley Masterplan  | NI Water News

NI Water is delighted to announce the initial community engagement project on the future of Silent Valley Mountain Park has been completed. 

The next stage is to share the findings of the consultation and gain feedback on the plan, which will then form the basis for future development and funding opportunities for the Silent Valley site. 

Public drop-in sessions have been arranged on Wednesday 1 November:

  • 3pm to 5pm - Annalong  Community Centre, Glassdrumman Road, Annalong, BT34 4QH
  • 6pm to 8pm - Kilkeel Development Association, The Nautilus Centre, Rooney Rd, Kilkeel, Newry BT34 4AG

Eoin Gilmore, Senior Capital Project Manager, NI Water explained:

“Silent Valley is a stunning site open for visitors to explore and enjoy, while also operating as a key strategic reservoir providing drinking water for a large part of County Down and the Greater Belfast Area.

“The Valley has celebrated some momentous anniversaries; 100 years of the Mourne Wall last year and recently 100 years since the cutting of the first sod which was the beginning of the reservoir we depend upon today.  These anniversaries serve as a reminder of the age of the site, with now being the perfect time to assess how we ensure the site is a shared space that can be enjoyed by all for the next 100 years. 

“To that end, it was important to hear what the local community and wider NI public wanted to see at the site to make it a truly inclusive attraction for all. 

“We were delighted at the range and depth of engagement the community engagement project generated.  Over 1400 online surveys were completed, and the drop-in sessions held in May provided excellent face-to-face engagement between the public and the project team.  

“This next stage of rolling out the Masterplan is also important, as it gives us the opportunity to share the vision, take on board any feedback and discuss next steps.  The drop-in sessions are open to all, even those who were not involved in the initial process.  If the face-to-face meetings are not suitable, an online survey will be available for a three-week period so everyone can be part of the process and their opinions on the Masterplan as it currently stands can be taken into account.”

The Masterplan was available as part of the Silent Valley ‘Cutting of the First Sod’ 100 year celebrations on 10 October 2023.  The team were on hand with display boards and visual copies to show guests attending the anniversary ceremony the new plans for the site. 

Martin Carey, Mourne Heritage Trust, explained the important role of stakeholders in the Masterplan progress:

“Mourne Heritage Trust were delighted to be involved right from the initial stages which identified the opportunity for Silent Valley to become, “A Living Valley, Shared By All”.  It was wonderful to see the depth of interest and commitment from local communities, organisations and individuals in the engagement process which was at the heart of shaping the Masterplan we have today.” 

For anyone unable to attend these meetings, an online survey has been created which can be completed by visiting:


  • Engagement with the local community developed ideas and concepts around the key themes of Inclusivity, Heritage Conservation, Education, Visitor & Recreation Experience and Partnership & Collaboration.

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